Just when we thought China has produced a fake version of almost anything — from mobile phones to designer bags to apparel and even branded cars! — here comes another one that can be added to that list: a fake Apple Store.
An American blogger, who goes by the name BirdAbroad, recently posted in her blog photos and a video of the rip-off Apple store. According to the blog entry, the store is located in the city of Kunming, capital of China’s southwestern Yunnan province.
The similarities with authorized Apple stores are uncanny, with the blogger describing in detail:
It looked like an Apple store. It had the classic Apple store winding staircase and weird upstairs sitting area. The employees were even wearing those blue t-shirts with the chunky Apple name tags around their necks.
You have already guessed the punchline, of course: this was a total Apple store ripoff. A beautiful ripoff – a brilliant one – the best ripoff store we had ever seen (and we see them every day). But some things were just not right: the stairs were poorly made. The walls hadn’t been painted properly.
Apple never writes “Apple Store” on it’s signs – it just puts up the glowing, iconic fruit.
Being the curious types that we are, we struck up some conversation with these salespeople who, hand to God, all genuinely think they work for Apple. I tried to imagine the training that they went to when they were hired, in which they were pitched some big speech about how they were working for this innovative, global company – when really they’re just filling the pockets of some shyster living in a prefab mansion outside the city by standing around a fake store disinterestedly selling what may or may not be actual Apple products that fell off the back of a truck somewhere.
Apple has declined to comment on the fake Apple store but a quick review of the list of authorized reseller stores in Apple’s official China website shows that authorized Apple outlets can only be found in Beijing and Shanghai.
I wonder what rip-off would come out next from China. Perhaps a fake Statue of Liberty, the Eiffel Tower, Mount Everest or, worse, not just an impersonator but a fake version of Barack Obama, Lady Gaga and Britney Spears?
Here’s a video of the fake Apple store in China: